World Cup 2018: Akanji says NFF never invited him to play for Nigeria

Manuel Obafemi Akanji has stated that the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) never invited him to play for the Super Eagles of Nigeria.

Akanji is born to a Nigerian father while his mother is from Switzerland and was eligible to play for the Super Eagles before his first official appearance for the European nation in a competitive game against the Faroe Islands in June 2017.

The 21-year-old was part of the Switzerland squad to the 2018 FIFA World Cup squad and was regarded as was one of the young stars of the tournament.

Super Eagles were praised after Lionel Messi inspired Argentina to a 2-1 victory in their final group D game of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, on Tuesday, June 26 play Akanji was eligible to play for the Super Eagles (Alex Livesey Getty Images.)

In a report by the Cable, Akanji revealed that they were no formal offer or negotiation with the Nigerian football body to represent the country at youth or senior level.

 He said, ”Nigeria never called me to come and play for them. So, it was never a question to be answered because Switzerland called me to play for them and I accepted.”

Manuel Akanji stats

Akanji revealed he has no regrets not playing for the Super Eagles as Switzerland progressed to the round of 16 of the competition only to get knocked out by Sweden while Nigeria could not get out from their group.

He said, ”No regret at all for not playing for Nigeria. We came into the next round, Nigeria didn’t. And it was my decision.”

Akanji also revealed in the report that he is not sure if he would have honoured the Nigerian call-up if he was invited.

Here are the reactions as Switzerland draw 2-2 with Costa Rica in their 2018 FIFA World Cup, group E final group encounter on Wednesday, June 27. play Manuel Akanji played for Switzerland at the World Cup (CNN Sport)

He said, “I don’t know if I would have played for Nigeria if I had been invited or not. Really I don’t know.

”I don’t have to think about if they called me because they did not call me. My parents never discussed with me where I should play or not. They just told me to do whatever I want to do. They always support me all the time no matter what I do.”

Switzerland stats

The young defender who recently move to Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund in the Winter transfer window will go on a break before he joins up for preparations for the 2018/19 season.


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